Sweden

Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia talk bullying: “We didn’t think it would be as bad as it was.”


Photo The Royal Court, Sweden

One of the biggest focuses of Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia’s Foundation is combating online hate speech, and the Prince Couple spoke more about bullying in a recent interview with SVT’s Morning Studio.

Friday’s interview comes after a new report about online bullying was released from the couple’s foundation at the end of October. Using the hashtag #nejtillnathat (“no more web hate”) and launching a corresponding website, the couple hopes to raise awareness about the effects of cyberhate and help put an end to what they called an Instagram post, “one of the major social problems of our time.”  

“We didn’t think it would be as bad as it was,” Prince Carl Philip said of their study, which focused on cyberbullying, its consequences and solutions. It includes some real – and harrowing – examples which Princess Sofia read during the launch of the foundation’s findings last month.

“It is a solid report with knowledgeable experts based on the stories that children and young people submitted to us anonymously via the initiative,” the couple wrote in an Instagram post.

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Princess Sofia has first-hand experience with online bullying after receiving public backlash whilst dating her now-husband. “It was a huge hate storm against me as a person when we got together,” Sofia said in another TV interview last month. “It becomes a scar in the soul.”

Her husband has received his own share of cruel comments due to being dyslexic, and their foundation also focuses on fighting bullying due to dyslexia.

In Friday’s interview, Princess Sofia shared that their foundation’s work came from their own experiences dealing with the stress of online hate.

“All this work came through self-perceived vulnerability on the internet that came in conjunction with us getting together, which was very frustrating and made me feel that this is something we have to deal with, ” she said, adding that if as an adult it impacted her so much, she wondered how children can handle bullying and not feel “very exposed and alone in such a situation.”

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The Prince and Princess noted that having an open dialogue with friends and family, as well as support at home is an integral part of dealing with online hate, and Sofia noted she has “always had a very strong support in my family. I have a good relationship and a very nice supportive family around me. They have always been my safe support.”

“One of the most important things my parents did was to let go and let me explore life my way,” Princess Sofia said. “It is something that I, as an adult, am very grateful for and think very much about that is what I want to give our children as well. Now our children are so small, and [I] wonder how to let the children go through the mistakes. But I know from my own experience that this is the most important thing you can do, so I will struggle to give that freedom to our children, as well.”

Speaking of their children, Prince Carl Philip said it was a positive thing when asked about the recent changes in the Royal House during the interview. “The children are given greater choice in their lives,” he said. “They can choose education or jobs more broadly.”



About author

Kristin is Chief Reporter for Royal Central and has been following the British royal family for more than 30 years. She blogs about royal fashion and travel at royallybroke.com. Kristin has appeared in UK and U.S. media outlets discussing the British royals including BBC Breakfast, the Associated Press, TIME, The Washington Post, and many others.